National security of the United States

National security of the United States is a collective term encompassing the policies of both U.S. national defense and foreign relations.[1]

Elements of U.S. national security policy

Measures taken to ensure U.S. national security include:

U.S. national security and the Constitution

The phrase “national security” entered U.S. political discourse as early as the Constitutional Convention. The Federalists argued that civilian control of the military required a strong central government under a single constitution. Alexander Hamilton wrote: “If a well-regulated militia be the most natural defense of a free country, it ought certainly to be under the regulation and at the disposal of that body which is constituted the guardian of the national security.” [3]

Organization of U.S. national security

U.S. National Security organization has remained essentially stable since July 26, 1947, when U.S. President Harry S. Truman signed the National Security Act of 1947. Together with its 1949 amendment, this act:

National security and civil liberties

After 9/11, the passage of the USA Patriot Act provoked debate about the alleged restriction of individual rights and freedoms for the sake of U.S. national security. The easing of warrant requirements for intelligence surveillance, under Title II of the Act, spurred the NSA warrantless surveillance controversy.[5] In August 2008, the United States Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court of Review (FISCR) affirmed the constitutionality of warrantless national security surveillance.[6]

National security reports

In May 2015, the White House released the report The National Security Implications of a Changing Climate.[7]

See also


  1. ^ U.S. Department of Defense, Joint Chiefs of Staff, New Revised Edition, Joint Pub. 1-02, 1990. Full text online
  2. ^ Encyclopedia of United States National Security, 2 Vol., Sage Publications (2005), ISBN 0-7619-2927-4.
  3. ^ Alexander Hamilton, The Federalist No. 29, “Concerning the Militia,” Jan. 9, 1788 Full text online
  4. ^ Amy B. Zegart, Flawed by Design: The Evolution of the CIA, JCS, and NSC, Stanford University Press (1999, ISBN 0-8047-4131-X.
  5. ^ Nola K Breglio, “Leaving FISA Behind: The Need to Return to Warrantless Surveillance,” Yale Law Journal, September 24, 2003. Full text PDF
  6. ^ "Court Affirms Wiretapping Without Warrants," New York Times, January 15, 2009. Full text online.
  7. ^ White House (May 20, 2015). "The National Security Implications of a Changing Climate".
Commission on the Future of the United States Aerospace Industry

The Commission on the Future of the United States Aerospace Industry (CFUSAI) was formed jointly by United States President George W. Bush and the United States Congress in 2001. Its first public meeting was held on November 27, 2001, and its final report was given on November 18, 2002.

Federal Chief Information Security Officer

The office of the Federal Chief Information Security Officer of the United States (CISO) was created on September 8 2016.

The role of the CISO is to guide cybersecurity policy, planning, and implementation in the U.S. Federal Government.

The first appointment to this position was Gregory Touhill.

The CISO position is in the Office of Management and Budget reporting to the U.S. Chief Information Officer. An acting deputy reports to the CISO.Having a CISO or the equivalent function in the organization has become a standard in business, government, and non-profit sectors. Throughout the world, a growing number of organizations have a CISO. By 2009, approximately 85% of large organizations had a security executive, up from 56% in 2008, and 43% in 2006. In 2011, in a survey by PricewaterhouseCoopers for their Annual Information Security Survey, 80% of businesses had a CISO or equivalent. About one-third of these security chiefs report to a Chief Information Officer (CIO), 35% to Chief Executive Officer (CEO), and 28% to the board of directors.

In corporations, the trend is for CISOs to have a strong balance of business acumen and technology knowledge. CISOs are often in high demand and compensation is comparable to other C-level positions who also hold a similar corporate title.

Independent organizations such as Holistic Information Security Practitioner Institute (HISPI) and EC-Council provide training, education and certification by promoting a holistic approach to Cybersecurity to Chief Information Security Officers (CISOs), Information Security Officers (ISOs), Information Security Managers, Directors of Information Security, Security Analysts, Security Engineers and Technology Risk Managers from major corporations and organizations.

Foreign Assistance Act

The Foreign Assistance Act (Pub.L. 87–195, 75 Stat. 424-2, enacted September 4, 1961, 22 U.S.C. § 2151 et seq.) is a United States Act of Congress. The Act reorganized the structure of existing U.S. foreign assistance programs, distinguishing between military from non-military aid, and created a new agency, the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) to administer non-military, economic assistance programs. President John F. Kennedy signed the Act on November 3, 1961, and issued Executive Order 10973, detailing the reorganization.USAID unified already existing U.S. aid efforts, combining the economic and technical assistance operations of the International Cooperation Administration, the loan activities of the Development Loan Fund, the local currency functions of the Export-Import Bank, and the agricultural surplus distribution activities of the Food for Peace program of the Department of Agriculture.

The Act provides that no assistance is to be provided to a government which "engages in a consistent pattern of gross violations of internationally recognized human rights, including torture or cruel, inhuman, or degrading treatment or punishment, prolonged detention without charges, causing the disappearance of persons by the abduction and clandestine detention of those persons, or other flagrant denial of the right to life, liberty, and the security of person, unless such assistance will directly benefit the needy people in such country."The Act also provides that no assistance is to be provided to any Communist country. However, the President may waive this prohibition if he determines that such assistance is vital to the national security of the United States, that the country is not controlled by the international Communist conspiracy, and that the assistance will promote the country's independence from international Communism. The President may also remove a country from the application of this provision for a certain time which the President determines. In order to remove a country from the application of this provision, the President must determine and report to Congress that such action is important to the national security of the United States.

The Act was amended in 2004 specific to the treatment of orphans and other vulnerable children. This amendment allows the president to provide aid to the peoples of other countries to look after children in cases of HIV/AIDS and to set up schools and other programs for the advancement of child treatment.

Four Freedoms

The Four Freedoms were goals articulated by United States President Franklin D. Roosevelt on Monday, January 6, 1941. In an address known as the Four Freedoms speech (technically the 1941 State of the Union address), he proposed four fundamental freedoms that people "everywhere in the world" ought to enjoy:

Freedom of speech

Freedom of worship

Freedom from want

Freedom from fearRoosevelt delivered his speech 11 months before the surprise Japanese attack on U.S. forces in Pearl Harbor, Hawaii that caused the United States to declare war on Japan, December 8, 1941. The State of the Union speech before Congress was largely about the national security of the United States and the threat to other democracies from world war that was being waged across the continents in the eastern hemisphere. In the speech, he made a break with the tradition of United States non-interventionism that had long been held in the United States. He outlined the U.S. role in helping allies already engaged in warfare.

In that context, he summarized the values of democracy behind the bipartisan consensus on international involvement that existed at the time. A famous quote from the speech prefaces those values: "As men do not live by bread alone, they do not fight by armaments alone." In the second half of the speech, he lists the benefits of democracy, which include economic opportunity, employment, social security, and the promise of "adequate health care". The first two freedoms, of speech and religion, are protected by the First Amendment in the United States Constitution. His inclusion of the latter two freedoms went beyond the traditional Constitutional values protected by the U.S. Bill of Rights. Roosevelt endorsed a broader human right to economic security and anticipated what would become known decades later as the "human security" paradigm in social science and economic development. He also included the "freedom from fear" against national aggression and took it to the new United Nations he was setting up.

John J. Hicks

John J. Hicks was second director of National Photographic Interpretation Center (NPIC). Hicks was appointed as the Director of NPIC in July 1973, after retirement of Arthur C. Lundahl, first director of NPIC. He served as the Director of NPIC from July 1973 to May 1978.

Lawfare (blog)

Lawfare is a blog dedicated to national security issues, published by the Lawfare Institute in cooperation with the Brookings Institution. It has received attention for articles on Donald Trump's presidency.

National Security Law of the United States

National Security Law is a field of study that deals with the balance between liberty and security in American society.

National Security Medal

The National Security Medal is a decoration of the United States of America officially established by President Harry S. Truman in Executive Order 10431 of January 19, 1953. The medal was originally awarded to any person, without regard to nationality, for distinguished achievement or outstanding contribution on or after July 26, 1947, in the field of intelligence relating to the national security of the United States.On October 2, 2015, President Barack Obama amended Executive Order 10431 to award the medal to any person, without regard to nationality, including members of the Armed Forces of the United States, for distinguished achievement or outstanding contribution made on or after July 26, 1947, in the field of national security through either exceptionally meritorious service performed in a position of high responsibility or through an act of heroism requiring personal courage of a high degree and complete disregard of personal safety. Two additional sections were added to the original order. First, any individual may recommend a potential recipient as a candidate for the award to the Executive Secretary of the National Security Council. Second, if the Executive Secretary of the National Security Council determines that the medal is warranted and following approval by the President, the Executive Secretary shall notify the Office of the Director of National Intelligence who will then process the award recommendation, prepare the medal and deliver it to the National Security Council for presentation to the recipient.

The National Security Medal is authorized to both civilians and personnel of the United States military and is an authorized decoration for display on active duty uniforms of the United States armed forces. In such cases, the National Security Medal is worn after all U.S. military personal decorations and unit awards and before any military campaign/service awards and foreign decorations.

Additional decorations of the National Security Medal are denoted by a bronze oak leaf cluster.

National security letter

A national security letter (NSL) is an administrative subpoena issued by the United States government to gather information for national security purposes. NSLs do not require prior approval from a judge. The Stored Communications Act, Fair Credit Reporting Act, and Right to Financial Privacy Act authorize the United States government to seek such information that is "relevant" to authorized national security investigations. By law, NSLs can request only non-content information, for example, transactional records and phone numbers dialed, but never the content of telephone calls or e-mails.NSLs typically contain a nondisclosure requirement forbidding the recipient of an NSL from disclosing that the FBI had requested the information. The nondisclosure provision must be authorized by the Director of the FBI, and only after he or she certifies "that otherwise there may result a danger to the national security of the United States; interference with a criminal, counterterrorism, or counterintelligence investigation; interference with diplomatic relations; or danger to the life or physical safety of any person." Moreover, a recipient of the NSL may still challenge the nondisclosure provision in federal court.The constitutionality of such nondisclosure provisions has been repeatedly challenged. The requirement was initially ruled to be unconstitutional as an infringement of free speech in the Doe v. Gonzales case, but that decision was later vacated in 2008 by the Second Circuit Court of Appeals after it held the USA PATRIOT Improvement and Reauthorization Act gave the recipient of an NSL that included a nondisclosure provision the right to challenge the nondisclosure provision in federal court. In March 2013, a judge in the Northern District of California held the nondisclosure provision in an NSL was unconstitutional. But on August 24, 2015, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals vacated the district court's decision and remanded the case to the district court for further proceedings. On remand, the district court held the "NSLs were issued in full compliance with the procedural and substantive requirements suggested by the Second Circuit in John Doe, Inc. v. Mukasey, 549 F.3d 861 (2d Cir. 2008), which had held that the 2006 NSL law could be constitutionally applied"... and "the NSL law, as amended [by the USA FREEDOM ACT of 2015], was constitutional." The two petitioners then appealed. On appeal, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals upheld the district court ruling, holding that NSLs are constitutional and held, "the nondisclosure requirement does not run afoul of the First Amendment." Under Seal v. Jefferson B. Sessions, III, Attorney General, Nos. 16-16067, 16-16081, and 16-16082, July 17, 2017.

Non-Detention Act

The Non-Detention Act of 1971 was passed to repeal portions of McCarran Internal Security Act of 1950, specifically Title II, the "Emergency Detention Act". The United States statute repealed the Emergency Detention Act of 1950 provisioning the United States Attorney General powers for detention of any American or non-American citizen deemed as a threat to the national security of the United States. The 64 Stat. 1019 statute was codified within Title 50 War and National Defense as 50 U.S.C. ch. 23, subch. II §§ 811-826.

The H.R. 234 legislation was passed by the 92nd United States Congressional session and enacted into law by the 37th President of the United States Richard Nixon on September 25, 1971.

Office of Secure Transportation

The U.S. Department of Energy/National Nuclear Security Administration's Office of Secure Transportation (OST) provides safe and secure transportation of nuclear weapons and components and special nuclear materials, and conducts other missions supporting the national security of the United States of America.

Organization of Afro-American Unity

The Organization of Afro-American Unity (OAAU) was a Pan-Africanist organization founded by Malcolm X in 1964. The OAAU was modeled on the Organisation of African Unity, which had impressed Malcolm X during his visit to Africa in April and May 1964. The purpose of the OAAU was to fight for the human rights of African Americans and promote cooperation among Africans and people of African descent in the Americas.

Malcolm X announced the establishment of the OAAU at a public meeting in New York's Audubon Ballroom on June 28, 1964. He had written the group's charter with John Henrik Clarke, Albert Cleage, Jesse Gray, and Gloria Richardson, among others. In a memo dated July 2, 1964, FBI Director J. Edgar Hoover described the nascent OAAU as a threat to the national security of the United States.Malcolm X, along with John Henrik Clarke, wrote the following into the Organization of Afro-American Unity (OAAU) Basic Unity Program:

Restoration: "In order to release ourselves from the oppression of our enslavers then, it is absolutely necessary for the Afro-American to restore communication with Africa."

Reorientation: "We can learn much about Africa by reading informative books."

Education: "The Organization of Afro-American Unity will devise original educational methods and procedures which will liberate the minds of our children. We will ... encourage qualified Afro-Americans to write and publish the textbooks needed to liberate our minds ... educating them [our children] at home."

Economic Security: "After the Emancipation Proclamation ... it was realized that the Afro-American constituted the largest homogeneous ethnic group with a common origin and common group experience in the United States and, if allowed to exercise economic or political freedom, would in a short period of time own this country. We must establish a technician bank. We must do this so that the newly independent nations of Africa can turn to us who are their brothers for the technicians they will need now and in the future."The OAAU pushed for black control of every aspect of the black community. At the founding rally, Malcolm X stated that the organization's principal concern was the human rights of blacks, but that it would also focus on voter registration, school boycotts, rent strikes, housing rehabilitation, and social programs for addicts, unwed mothers, and troubled children. Malcolm X saw the OAAU as a way of "un-brainwashing" black people, ridding them of the lies they had been told about themselves and their culture.

On July 17, 1964, Malcolm X was welcomed to the second meeting of the Organisation of African Unity in Cairo as a representative of the OAAU.When a reporter asked whether white people could join the OAAU, Malcolm X said, "Definitely not." Then he added, "If John Brown were still alive, we might accept him."

Personnel Reliability Program

The Personnel Reliability Program (PRP) is a United States Department of Defense security, medical and psychological evaluation program, designed to permit only the most trustworthy individuals to have access to nuclear weapons (NPRP), chemical weapons (CPRP), and biological weapons (BPRP).

The program was first instituted for nuclear weapons during the Cold War; it was later extended to the realm of chemical and biological workers. Among its goals are, (Quoting from DOD Directive 5210.42)

The Department of Defense shall support the national security of the United States by maintaining an effective nuclear deterrent while protecting the public health, safety, and environment. For that reason, nuclear-weapons require special consideration because of their policy implications and military importance, their destructive power, and the political consequences of an accident or an unauthorized act. The safety, security, control, and effectiveness of nuclear weapons are of paramount importance to the security of the United States.

Nuclear weapons shall not be subject to loss, theft, sabotage, unauthorized use, unauthorized destruction, unauthorized disablement, jettison, or accidental damage.

Only those personnel who have demonstrated the highest degree of individual reliability for allegiance, trustworthiness, conduct, behavior, and responsibility shall be allowed to perform duties associated with nuclear weapons, and they shall be continuously evaluated for adherence to PRP standards.

The PRP evaluates many aspects of the individual's work life and home life. Any disruption of these, or severe deviation from an established norm would be cause to deny access. The denial might be temporary or permanent. However, the policy does explicitly state,

The denial of eligibility or the revocation of certification for assignment to PRP positions is neither a punitive measure nor the basis for disciplinary action. The failure of an individual to be certified for assignment to PRP duties does not necessarily reflect unfavorably on the individual's suitability for assignment to other duties.

In certain instances officers and enlisted personnel certified under PRP have been punitively punished for information that also disqualifies them from the program. The suspension from, or indeed the permanent removal of an individual from the program in it itself does not represent a punitive measure.


QKENCHANT was the name of a Central Intelligence Agency project used to provide security approvals on non-Agency personnel and facilities.

Q clearance

Q clearance or Q access authorization is the Department of Energy (DOE) security clearance required to access Top Secret Restricted Data, Formerly Restricted Data, and National Security Information, as well as Secret Restricted Data. Restricted Data (RD) is defined in the Atomic Energy Act of 1954 and covers nuclear weapons and related materials. The lower-level L clearance is sufficient for access to Secret Formerly Restricted Data (FRD) and National Security Information, as well as Confidential Restricted Data, Formerly Restricted Data, and National Security Information. Access to Restricted Data is only granted on a need-to-know basis to personnel with appropriate clearances.

A Q Clearance is equivalent to a United States Department of Defense Top Secret clearance. "For access to some classified information, such as Sensitive Compartmented Information (SCI) or Special Access Programs (SAPS), additional requirements or special conditions may be imposed by the information owner even if the person is otherwise eligible to be granted a security clearance or access authorization based on reciprocity."Anyone possessing an active Q clearance is always categorized as holding a National Security Critical-Sensitive position (sensitivity Level 3). Additionally, most Q-cleared incumbents will have collateral responsibilities designating them as Level 4: National Security Special-Sensitive personnel. With these two designations standing as the highest-risk sensitivity levels, occupants of these positions hold extraordinary accountability, harnessing the potential to cause exceptionally grave or inestimable damage to the national security of the United States.

In addition to classification levels, three categories of classified matter are identified: Restricted Data (RD), Formerly Restricted Data (FRD), and National Security Information (NSI), as well as a class of access-restricted materials: special nuclear material (SNM). The employee must have a security level clearance consistent with his/her assignment. Common combinations are reflected in the table on the right.

Much of the DOE information at this level requires access to Critical Nuclear Weapon Design Information (CNWDI, pronounced "SIN-widee"). Such information bears the page marking TOP SECRET//RD-CNWDI and the paragraph marking (TS-N). The DOE security clearance process is overseen by the Department of Energy Office of Hearings and Appeals.

DOE clearances apply for access specifically relating to atomic or nuclear related materials ("Restricted Data" under the Atomic Energy Act of 1954). The clearance is issued predominantly to non-military personnel. In 1946 U.S. Army Counter Intelligence Corps Major William L. Uanna, in his capacity as the first Chief of the Central Personnel Clearance Office at the newly formed Atomic Energy Commission, named and established the criteria for the Q Clearance. The security clearance process at the DOE is adjudicated by the DOE Office of Hearings and Appeals (OHA) where an individual whose security clearance is at issue may seek to appeal a security clearance decision to an administrative judge and subsequently to an Appeal Panel.As of 1993, Q Clearances required a single-scope background investigation of the previous ten years of the applicant's life by both the Office of Personnel Management and the Federal Bureau of Investigation, and as of 1998 cost $3,225.

Robert M. Huffstutler

Robert M. Huffstutler was director of National Photographic Interpretation Center from February 1984 to January 1988.At the time of his appointment as director of NPIC, Huffstutler was a twenty-five year veteran of Central Intelligence Agency, and head of the intelligence directorate's Office of Soviet Analysis. He had served in Office of Strategic Research from 1967 to 1982.

Truman Doctrine

The Truman Doctrine was an American foreign policy whose stated purpose was to counter Soviet geopolitical expansion during the Cold War. It was announced to Congress by President Harry S. Truman on March 12, 1947, and further developed on July 12, 1948, when he pledged to contain threats in Greece and Turkey. Direct American military force was usually not involved, but Congress appropriated financial aid to support the economies and militaries of Greece and Turkey. More generally, the Truman Doctrine implied American support for other nations allegedly threatened by Soviet communism. The Truman Doctrine became the foundation of American foreign policy, and led, in 1949, to the formation of NATO, a military alliance that is still in effect. Historians often use Truman's speech to date the start of the Cold War.

Truman told Congress that "it must be the policy of the United States to support free people who are resisting attempted subjugation by armed minorities or by outside pressures." Truman contended that because totalitarian regimes coerced free peoples, they automatically represented a threat to international peace and the national security of the United States. Truman made the plea in the midst of the Greek Civil War (1946–49). He argued that if Greece and Turkey did not receive the aid, they would inevitably fall to communism with grave consequences throughout the region. Because Turkey and Greece were historic rivals, it was considered necessary to help both equally even though the crisis in Greece was far more intense.

Critics of the policy have observed that the governments of Greece and Turkey were themselves far from democratic at this time, and neither were facing Soviet subversion in the spring of 1949. Historian Eric Foner writes that the Doctrine "set a precedent for American assistance to anticommunist regimes throughout the world, no matter how undemocratic, and for the creation of a set of global military alliances directed against the Soviet Union."For years, the United Kingdom had supported Greece, but was now near bankruptcy and was forced to radically reduce its involvement. In February 1947, Britain formally requested for the United States to take over its role in supporting the royalist Greek government. The policy won the support of Republicans who controlled Congress and involved sending $400 million in American money but no military forces to the region. The effect was to end the Greek revolt, and in 1952, both Greece and Turkey joined NATO, a military alliance, to guarantee their stability.

The Truman Doctrine was informally extended to become the basis of American Cold War policy throughout Europe and around the world. It shifted American foreign policy toward the Soviet Union from anti-fascism ally to a policy of containment of Soviet expansion as advocated by diplomat George Kennan. It was distinguished from rollback by implicitly tolerating the previous Soviet takeovers in Eastern Europe.

United States Air Force Office of Special Investigations

The U.S. Air Force Office of Special Investigations (AFOSI or OSI) is a U.S. federal law enforcement agency that reports directly to the Secretary of the Air Force. AFOSI is also a U.S. Air Force field operating agency under the administrative guidance and oversight of the Inspector General of the Air Force. By federal statute, AFOSI provides independent criminal investigative, counterintelligence and protective service operations worldwide and outside of the traditional military chain of command. AFOSI proactively identifies, investigates, and neutralizes serious criminal, terrorist, and espionage threats to personnel and resources of the Air Force and the U.S. Department of Defense, thereby protecting the national security of the United States.

United States Intelligence Community

The United States Intelligence Community (IC) is a federation of 16 separate United States government intelligence agencies and a 17th administrative office, that work separately and together to conduct intelligence activities to support the foreign policy and national security of the United States. Member organizations of the IC include intelligence agencies, military intelligence, and civilian intelligence and analysis offices within federal executive departments. The IC is overseen by the Office of the Director of National Intelligence (ODNI) making up the seventeen-member Intelligence Community, which itself is headed by the Director of National Intelligence (DNI), who reports to the President of the United States.Among their varied responsibilities, the members of the Community collect and produce foreign and domestic intelligence, contribute to military planning, and perform espionage. The IC was established by Executive Order 12333, signed on December 4, 1981, by U.S. President Ronald Reagan.The Washington Post reported in 2010 that there were 1,271 government organizations and 1,931 private companies in 10,000 locations in the United States that were working on counterterrorism, homeland security, and intelligence, and that the intelligence community as a whole includes 854,000 people holding top-secret clearances. According to a 2008 study by the Office of the Director of National Intelligence, private contractors make up 29% of the workforce in the U.S. intelligence community and account for 49% of their personnel budgets.

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